Fall is full of seasonal activities that kids and the entire family will love. From exploring in nature and enjoying the refreshing weather, to baking yummy delights with in-season ingredients and doing an abundance of fall-themed crafts, here's how to give your kids their most awesome autumn yet.
Outdoors Fall Activities for Kids
Autumn is the perfect time to get outside and immerse your kids in nature. The air is crisp, the leaves are vibrantly bright, and there is no shortage of fun fall activities to enjoy with kids in the great outdoors.
Plant Bulbs for Spring
A bit of digging in the dirt come fall will leave the kids with spring flowers to pick! Get the kids a shovel and have them plant fall bulbs.
S'mores and Bonfire Night
Instead of telling the kids that it's time for bed, tell them it's time to head out to a backyard bonfire and have a treat!
Build a Den in the Woods
Gather up long sticks and create a lean-to den in the forest.
Have a Fall Picnic
Lay a plaid blanket amidst the fallen leaves and dine on your favorite fall picnic snacks.
You heard that right. After August is blackberry season! Switch up traditional apple picking with a bit of blackberry picking.
Take a Woods Walk
Explore the sights and sounds of the woods in autumn. Check out the different colored leaves, the falling pine cones and scattered acorns, and bring some home for future projects and crafts.
Decorate Your Yard Using Natural Items
Have the kids help pick out pretty pumpkins and gourds, haystacks, wild corn, and corn stalks to decorate your front porch.
Fashion a Scarecrow
Turn an old flannel shirt and a pair of jeans or overalls into a scarecrow for your yard by stuffing the clothing with newspaper and topping it off with a pumpkin head.
Do a Mini Nature Photo Session
Hand kids a camera or have older kids use their cell phones and devices to create a woodsy photoshoot.
Make Nature Witches Brew
Little kids can gather twigs, dirt, acorns, pine cones, flowers, and leaves and make a heaping pot of Witches' Brew in the backyard.
Fall Activities for Kids in the Kitchen
Fall is a palate's delight, and the season is the perfect time to get kids into the kitchen so they can start creating unique culinary creations packed with fall flavor.
Create Pumpkin Spiced Everything
Pumpkin spiced drinks, cookies, muffins, pancakes, and trail mix. Anything can be turned into a pumpkin spice paradise with a bit of creativity.
Bake Pumpkin Seeds
There is only one time of year to do this, and it's now! Kids love the pumpkin seed baking process because it starts with getting hands messy and gooey as they retrieve seeds from the pumpkins.
Make Seasonal Pies
Work with your kids to teach them how to bake a classic apple pie or a sweet pumpkin pie.
Craft Homemade Apple Cider
Drink it cold or enjoy it hot; autumn is the ideal time to sip on some apple cider!
Explore Seasonal Spices
Create whipped paints using the fragrances of fall and whipped cream. Kids can explore using their senses of touch and taste, and if a bit trickles into their mouths, that's okay too!
Make No-Bake Pumpkin Bars
No-bake pumpkin bars are a great recipe to allow kids to try independently, since no oven is required.
Make Homemade Applesauce
Applesauce is a favorite snack with the younger crowd, and it's pretty easy to make too. Get kids involved with apple washing, pouring ingredients into the pot... and if they are old enough and you are supervising, let them stir the mixture over the stove.
Whip Up Pumpkin Pudding
Pudding is easy to make and fun to eat. This pumpkin pudding recipe gets kids cooking, and doubles as a great mid-day snack.
Make Homemade Apple Butter
Apple butter is sweet and delicious, especially when it is homemade. Kids can make butter in a jar for a super easy culinary experience.
Create a Fall Inspired Dinner Menu
Have the kids think up their favorite fall food items and ask them to create an entire autumn-inspired menu from start to finish. Work together to bring the menu to life in your kitchen.
Crafty Fall Creations to Make With Your Child
When the wind blows cold, and no one wants to head outdoors, try a few fun fall crafts with your kids. These autumn-inspired projects are easy, adorable, and will keep kids busy for hours of play.
Do Leaf Rubbings
Try some leaf rubbings using lots of different leaves found in nature.
Create Salt Dough Leaves
Use your favorite salt dough recipe, fall-colored food coloring, cinnamon (or pumpkin spice), and leaf cookie cutters to make salt dough leaves.
Make a Handprint Fall Tree
Paint a trunk and branches of a tree on large white board paper. Have kids use red, brown, orange, and yellow paint and their handprints to make the autumn leaves on the tree.
Make Leaf Monsters
Using items found in fall, fashion little monsters, animals, and people. This cute project will keep your little pumpkins busy and content.
Paint pumpkins and give them silly faces or colorful designs, whatever strikes your kids as fun and artistic.
Older kids can make 3D pumpkin art with beads and pipe cleaners. Younger kids can give this a whirl too. It is excellent for fine motor skills, but they might need some help with the assembling component.
Make Pine Cone Owls
Nothing is cuter than a little pine cone owl. This craft is easy enough for older kids to create on their own, and for little ones to make with a bit of help.
Do Apple Stamping
You don't need to paint with a paint brush! Cut an apple in half, dip the fleshy part of the apple into paint, and let kids stamp away.
Make Pumpkin Suncatchers
Pumpkins suncatchers are the perfect fall crafts to let those rays of light into your home.
Create Fall Inspired Watercolor Art
Give kids a large, blank canvas and watercolors, and tell them to create a fall-inspired work of art.
Create Cute Bats
Using little more than toilet paper rolls, paint, and construction paper, fashion some cute little bats to hang throughout the house.
Make Mosaic Pumpkins
Tear art is a perfect way for young children to learn to work those little fingers while being creative. These mosaic pumpkins are an ideal art project for preschool-aged children.
Far and Wide Fall Activities
The autumn season is full of adventure and discovery. Head out on exciting fall adventures to expand horizons and bond as a fall-loving family. The kids will definitely be putting these excursions in their memory bank.
Go Pumpkin Picking
Head to a local pumpkin patch and pick out the perfect carving pumpkin.
Try a Corn Maze
See if your kids are smart enough to work together and navigate their way out of a corn maze.
Visit a Cider Mill
Check out a cider mill. Bring cider, donuts, and apples home for an afternoon snack.
Go on a Hay Ride
Pile onto hay bales and let a tractor pull your kids through golden fields and colorful forests.
Cheer on Your Favorite Football Team
Take the kids to a college or professional football game and cheer on your family's favorite team.
Spend an Evening Boo-ing Friends
Make paper bags filled with fall treats and give them to your neighbors and friends. Sneak up to the porch of their home, place the bag on the stoop, ring the doorbell and run! What a fun way to spend an October night.
Check Out a Fall Festival
See if any local fall festivals are happening in your region and take the kids on an autumn outing for the day.
Take the Kids on a Color Drive
Check out the vibrant, beautiful leaves as you listen to music, roll the windows down and enjoy one another's company. Don't forget to work in a few road trip games during your drive.
Gather Fall Produce at a Farmers Market
Take the kids to a fall farmers market and explore the seasonal produce offered there. Make a delicious meal using your fresh finds.
Head to the Farm
Fall is a great time to head to the farm and visit the animals.
Fall Activities Perfect for Those Chilly Indoor Days
While the autumn season certainly invites nature-loving kids to get outdoors and explore the world's beauty, it is also the perfect time to connect within your four walls. Kids won't be able to get enough of these fall activities specially designed for a chilly autumn day.
Play Pin the Nose on the Jack-O'-Lantern
This game is just like Pin the Tail on the Donkey, except you are pinning the nose on the Jack-O'-Lantern!
Play Mummy Wrap
Have kids wrap each other up in toilet paper and race to the finish line without breaking the mummy wrapping. Such a giggle-worthy fall activity.
Play Apple Toss
Grab a few pumpkin-shaped candy buckets from the dollar store and a few red and green plastic balls from an existing ball bin or another toy. Set the buckets up at various distances from the kids, and see if they can throw the apples into the buckets.
Keep your 2-liter pop bottles and store them away for a fun fall activity. Spray paint them orange and let them dry. Set them up in a hallway as you would bowling pins, and let kids take turns knocking them down using a soft ball.
Mystery Pumpkin Float
All you need are ten plastic pumpkins that will float, and a bathtub of water to keep kids busy. Using a permanent marker, make a star on the bottom of one pumpkin. Kids then turn pumpkins over until they find the one with the star. This is a take on the classic rubber duck game found at carnivals and fairs everywhere.
Bake Playdough Pies
Using playdough, mini pie tins, a rolling pin, and other safe kitchen utensils, be a baker for the day and make playdough pies for fun.
Make a Spider Web Maze
Use white masking tape and create a wild maze in the hallway. This is your spider web. Kids are the little spiders who then try and weave their bodies through the web, seeing if they can get to the end without breaking the tape.
Play Pumpkin Tic-Tac-Toe
Use real or fake small pumpkins and a cardboard Tic-Tac-Toe board. Paint an "x" on half the pumpkins and an "o" on the others. Play a few rounds of pumpkin Tic-Tac-Toe.
Autumn Holiday-Themed Activities
During fall, many families celebrate not one but TWO majorly fun holidays. These Thanksgiving and Halloween-inspired activities will make kids forget that Christmas is right around the corner.
Head to a Haunted House
Take the kids through a haunted house if they are up for fun and fright.
Make Fun DIY Halloween Costumes
Play around with fabric, needles, thread, and glue to make fun DIY Halloween costumes.
Play Ghost in the Graveyard
Ghost in the Graveyard is a classic game to let the kids play on a fall evening.
Have a Spooky Movie Marathon
Older kids can hunker down and work through their favorite spooky movies. Younger kids can watch family-friendly Halloween flicks that won't give them the willies at night.
Make a Thankful Jar
Have kids write all that they are thankful for on small slips of paper. Place the slips in a mason jar. On Thanksgiving, take each one out and read it.
Create Pressed Leaf Table Mats for Thanksgiving Dinner
Gather leaves from the outdoors and press them in between wax paper to create festive table mats for Thanksgiving dinner.
Throw a Family Halloween Party
Give the kids a night to remember with a family Halloween party. Set out spooky snacks, play fun Halloween games, and wrap the night up with a family-friendly Halloween movie.
Do a Thanksgiving Day Scavenger Hunt
Create a Thanksgiving-inspired scavenger hunt on Turkey Day. Include items to find like:
- A football
- The word "Thankful"
Devote a Day to Giving Back
November is all about gratefulness, so head out to a local soup kitchen, food pantry, or animal shelter and help kids understand what it means to give back.
Fall Activities That Lead to Learning
Anything that helps children learn and boosts brainpower is a winning activity in parents' books. These fall activities are educational and entertaining.
Play Words From Words - Thanksgiving Edition
Give kids the words: Thanksgiving Day. They then have to use only the letters in the words given to make as many words as possible. The child who comes up with the most words wins.
Fall Item Sorting
Gather plenty of pine cones, acorns, sticks, and leaves, and ask young children to sort objects into their respective piles.
I Spy Fall Edition
Play I Spy with common autumn objects to help boost children's vocabulary.
Fall Color Mix
Work on mixing colors of the season using water and food dye. What happens when kids combine yellow and red? Can they create a brown hue? What colors did they use to do that? See how many shades of orange kids can mix by adjusting the amounts of red and yellow used. There is so much to do with color!
Make a Pumpkin Volcano
Science is so fun, and kids will love this take on the classic baking soda-vinegar volcano experiment with a fall twist.
Play With Halloween Slime
All slime is a major hit with kids, but Halloween-themed alien slime, well, now you're speaking their language.
Read Autumn-Inspired Books
You will NEVER run out of fall reading material. Take your favorite fall books under a colorful tree and get reading.
Learn About Dia de los Muertos
This Mexican holiday occurs in the fall. Learn and celebrate this unique cultural holiday with your kids.
Try Acorn Math
Use acorns as manipulatives for adding and subtraction.
Create a Thanksgiving Cookbook
Brainstorm favorite Thanksgiving recipes with the kids. Teach them how to write a recipe down, including ingredients and steps to create a dish. Assemble the recipes into a family cookbook.
Pumpkin Letter Stick
Using sticky foam letters, work on fine motor and early literacy skills. Spread the letters out and ask kids to find a specific letter. When they locate it, have them stick it onto a pumpkin.
Make Fall the Best Season of All!
Fall will become the season kids look forward to the most when you work in fun and exciting autumn activities. Whether children get outdoors in the crisp air, or spend time cooking and crafting, there are zero excuses for kids to be bored in the fall.